Developing strong alignment,
mutual trust and effective communication

Co founders’ relationship. An important factor for start-up success, but unfortunately many keep it unspoken.

Same as investing time and efforts in developing sustainable business model, so you need to invest time, energy and sensitivity in building trusted and aligned co founders’ relationship.

Same as adjusting your product to the market needs, so as the start-up is scaling up, the founders’ relationship needs to grow as well and adjust to the business needs.

There 6 key typical conflicts between co-founders, some of them conscious and some unconscious:

As start-up psychologist, I help many start-ups improving the communication and synergy between the co founders.

Co founders need to learn how to fight and disagree in a positive and constructive way. They need to learn how to talk on the content but also on what’s under the surface: the triggers, the emotions, the personal needs.

Read also this great article:

 Practical tools for good fights
with your co-founder

  1. Pay attention to what’s working. Keep a daily list of all the positive things your co founder does. Elevate what they’re getting right, instead of focusing on what’s annoying you. Don’t “kitchen sink”.

  2. Don’t pile on every complaint or start talking the last three years of everything you’re been through. Fix one issue at a time.

  3. Avoid character assassination. Think about temporary and circumstantial explanations for your co founder’s behaviors as you do for your own, as often as you can.

  4. Figure out if you fight, flee or freeze. If you build a bigger wall, your co founder may bring out a bigger fight to knock you down. Understand your respective conflict management styles.

  5. Stop talking in categorically. We often confuse our experiences and feelings with facts. Statements such as “You always” or “You never” should be stripped out of your vocabulary.

  6. Start the 10-seconds shot clock. Research shows that people don’t listen to more than 10 seconds of someone’s arguments before they start building their rebuttal. So keep it short.

High growth startups require high growth founders